Japan Asset Purchase Program: Market Happenings for Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Premarket, futures are up on news the Bank of Japan announced a monetary boost to address weak economic growth. Gainers this morning include GLW (+3.06%), ANF, ANR, MON and MRO while losers include AZO (-3.94%), LRCX, ORLY, KLAC and SCHW.

The Market

The Bank of Japan announced it would expand its asset purchase program by ¥10 trillion to about ¥80 trillion to boost its slowing economy. The news pushed Asian stocks higher.

Central bankers around the world have been stepping up their stimulus plans to help fuel the global economy. Last week, the Federal Reserve said it would buy $40 billion worth of mortgage backed securities a month. Before that, the European Central Bank revealed its new bond-buying program.

The euro rose to a five-month high against the U.S. dollar. Gold prices jumped to a nearly seven-month high early Wednesday, hitting $1,780 an ounce before pulling back slightly.

European stocks are higher and Asian markets closed higher.

The national average price of gasoline was down five-tenths of a cent to $3.854 per gallon.

Earnings Reports

Earnings reports (estimates): GIS-General Mills ($0.62), ADBE-Adobe (0.59), BBBY-Bed Bath and Beyond (1.02), AZO-Autozone (8.40), ASNA-Ascena Retail (0.29), CLC-Clarcor (0.69).

Financial Calendar

0700 ET Weekly MBA mortgage applications, previous +11.1% with purchase sub-index +8.1% and refi sub-index +11.9%.

0830 ET Aug housing starts expected +2.6% to 765,000, July -1.1% to 746,000. Aug building permits expected -2.0% to 795,000, July +6.7% to 811,000.

0945 ET Kansas City Fed President Esther George delivers opening comments at Kansas City Fed conference “The future of workforce development.”

1000 ET Aug existing home sales expected +2.0% to 4.56 mln, July +2.3% to 4.47 million.

1030 ET DOE Weekly Petroleum Status Report.

1900 ET Dallas Fed President Richard Fisher speaks on the economy and monetary policy at the Harvard Club of NYC.

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